Populism and Far-Right
Trends in Europe
This book contains important contributions alongside original research that took place during vibrant debates that was held between February-May 2022 at the international research seminars hosted by the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore. The primary goal of the book and its authors is to offer a lens through which to interpret a complex set of interrelated contemporary political phenomena, sometimes with distant origins that relate to both populism and the far-right in contemporary European Politics.
What emerges is the disturbing observation that the European far-right, although in a rich variety of forms, has been capable of increasingly going “mainstream”, in effect normalizing and increasingly integrating into both public debates and political systems alike. This is part of a broader trend that is not just taking place in Europe, but refers to a much broader and worrying picture at the global level. In this important book volume readers will find the online generation of “truths” by media organizations, the pervasive use of social media to mobilize electorates, the association with environmentalist causes alongside the ideological flexibility and opportunism of populist political leaders. Most significantly, all of these elements have contributed to the normalization of features once solely associated with the extreme-right fringes of the political spectrum. This pattern is particularly striking in modern Italian politics at the 2022 Italian General Election, with the increasingly blurred ideological lines between the far-right and the extreme-right playing out in real time, allowing a rightwing coalition bloc, composed by two fully-fledged far-right parties, to be labeled as centrodestra.
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